Application Process, Program Details & Eligibility

Application Process

Policy Fellow applicants will be asked to provide an abstract describing their efforts to influence, inform, or advance a policy matter that affects the individuals, families, or communities with which they work. If selected for the program, Fellows will work one-on-one with their mentors through virtual communication to further their change strategy and thoughtfully develop their work in preparation for presenting at the NSWM’s Annual Management Conference.

Fellows will be asked to address the following questions within their abstracts:

Motivation: Why do you care about this policy issue?

Problem Statement: What problems are you trying to solve?

Approach: How will you go about solving or making progress on this policy issue?

A few examples of such projects include those that:

  • Offer alternatives to problematic program design of publicly funded initiatives
  • Involve policy advocacy for innovative programming that address gaps in service needs or structural inequities, e.g. living wage issues
  • Amplify community voice and community engagement with policymakers
  • Educate policymakers with research findings and other data in order to promote better policy solutions for vulnerable populations and communities served by that agency.

Program Details

  • Fellows will make a commitment to reflection, study, and develop skills and new relationships.
  • Fellows will join a diverse cohort of 15 human services and/or health care management professionals, 5 of whom will be selected from New York City, representing various social work sectors.
  • Fellows will participate in group check-ins for support and to foster a peer network.
  • Fellows will meet for 2-3 hours per month with a mentor between October 2020 and June 2021.
  • Fellows will formally present their projects at NSWM’s Annual Management Conference.

1st Year Policy Fellow Experience

1st Year Policy Fellows:

Fellows will engage in a poster project of their own design to address a public policy issue, which will be presented at NSWM’s Annual Management Conference. Policy Fellows can expect to spend a few hours per month on activities related to the program.

Additional Deliverables:

  • Submit final reports on their policy projects and articles for publication (Required)
  • Submit an article to NSWM’s Community Voice blog (Required)
  • Submit a proposal to co-present a paper with their mentor at NSWM’s Annual Management Conference (Optional)
  • Submit an article to NSWM’s Human Service Organizations: Management, Leadership and Governance Journal (Optional)
  • Submit a socially conscious writing to a nationally known newspaper e.g. Huffington Post (Optional)

2nd Year Policy Fellowship Experience

2nd Year Fellows: 

Fellows will have the opportunity to further develop their project from Year 1 and present on a panel about the past two years of work they have completed throughout the Policy Fellow program at the Annual Management Conference.

Additional Deliverables:

  • Submit final reports on their policy projects and articles for publication (Required)
  • Submit an article to NSWM’s Community Voice blog (Required)
  • Submit a proposal to co-present a paper with their mentor at NSWM’s Annual Management Conference (Optional)
  • Submit an article to NSWM’s Human Service Organizations: Management, Leadership and Governance Journal (Optional)
  • Submit a socially conscious writing to a nationally known newspaper e.g. Huffington Post (Optional)

Eligibility

Fellow Eligibility

  • NSWM member (or willing to join at no cost)
  • Must provide proof of employment as employer has to be supportive of fellowship
  • Must live in the United States
  • 15 Fellows will be accepted
    • 5 Fellows will be selected from New York City
  • Submission of the Policy Fellows application form
  • Preference given to holders of a Masters degree who work in a management capacity
  • Hold a strong interest and/or experience in policy
  • Availability to participate through the length of the program (9 months, October 2020 – June 2021)
  • Availability to present at NSWM’s Annual Management Conference
    • All registration fees will be waived and a $1,000 stipend will be provided to those that present

Mentor Eligibility

  • NSWM member (or willing to join at no cost)
  • Must live in the United States
  • 5+ years of policy experience and in an executive role
  • PhD preferred but not required
  • Availability to participate through the length of the program (9 months, October 2020 – June 2021)
  • Ability to commit to 2-3 hours per month mentoring a Fellow on a policy project
  • Availability to attend NSWM’s Annual Management Conference
    • Registration fees will be waived
  • Access to equipment (internet and telephone)

THANK YOU to our funder!

Application Deadline:

Sunday, September 13, 2020

“The Network for Social Work Management Policy Fellows Program has been one of the most valuable professional activities I have experienced to date. Aside from being able to work side-by-side with an expert professional mentor honing my skills in policy research and advocacy, learning with and ultimately from my Fellow colleagues has been instrumental in shaping my perspectives on numerous societal issues and ultimately my future career goals. I would encourage any social worker looking for a new challenge to consider the Policy Fellows Program as a significant opportunity to amplify their professional impact and to build connections that will undoubtedly serve them in doing so well into the future.”

– Raine Arndt-Couch, JD, LCSW/LCSW-C, CCM, 2020 Policy Fellow

“The Network for Social Work Management has fostered relationships between emerging and established leaders. Their commitment to this mission has helped individuals to find their voice and the support they need to professionally grow and positively impact all levels of Health and Human Services. I am grateful to be connected with the Network and for their support.”

– Jonathan Dennehy, LMSW, 2020 Policy Fellow

“My journey as an NSWM fellow: As someone whose career changed to a social worker, I have been highly satisfied with my new role and new environment. Working closely with the Asian immigrant population with limited English proficiency, it has become my new habit to observe diversity in any group that I encounter. When I first heard of the NSWM fellowship program, I visited all the fellows from the previous years, and I was able to find the diversity within them. Each fellow was unique, and their interests were across the board, as is the case with their mentors. After being announced as one of this year’s fellows, my eyesight broadened month by month with help from not only mentors but also my cohort fellows. Sharing their interest through up-to-date article and news, I felt like I was back in my MSW program again, listening to other areas which I could not pay attention anymore. Also, professor Murali, professor at the USC social work program, has been providing me with so much valuable information on the new approach and application in the social work program as my mentor. Thanks to him, my submission to multiple conferences got selected through the peer-review process. Besides, I was able to get to know other scholars in the fields. Professor Murali has led me to take into consideration technology, and its use in social work before virtual learning is fully active. Also, my dear fellows reached out to me to think about how we can collaborate with one another for the greater good to publish an article about our experience in the NSWM with massive support from the Lakeya.

This chance could have passed by, but it has come to me just like it. I cannot thank you enough for the NSWM and the support and care I receive through the program. For this reason, I strongly encourage all my fellow macro social work managers to join to help the NSWM. In return, I will try to be a better social worker for myself, my family, and my community. It is all possible because of the NSWM. Thank you.”

– Sangeun Lee, MSW, LSW, 2020 Policy Fellow